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  • 8/11/2019 Illich Dissertation




    A Dissertation



    Submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies ofTexas A&M University

    in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of


    December 2007

    Major Subject: History

  • 8/11/2019 Illich Dissertation




    A Dissertation



    Submitted to the Office of Graduate Studies ofTexas A&M University

    in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of


    Approved by:

    Chair of Committee, Arnold KrammerCommittee Members, Chester Dunning

    Henry SchmidtRobert Shandley

    Head of Department, Walter Buenger

    December 2007

    Major Subject: History

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    German Imperialism in the Ottoman Empire:

    A Comparative Study. (December 2007)

    Niles Stefan Illich, B.A., Texas A&M University;

    M.A., Clemson University

    Chair of Advisory Committee: Dr. Arnold Krammer

    The conventional understanding of German expansion abroad, between

    unification (1871) and the First World War (1914), is that Germany established colonies

    in Africa, the Pacific Islands, and to a lesser degree in China. This colonialism began in

    1884 with the recognition of German Southwest Africa. This dissertation challenges

    these conventionally accepted notions about German expansion abroad. The challenge

    presented by this dissertation is a claim that German expansionism included imperial

    activity in the Ottoman Empire. Although the Germans did not develop colonies in the

    Ottoman Empire, German activity in the Middle East conformed closely to the

    established model for imperialism in the Ottoman Empire; the British established this

    model in the 1840s. By considering the economic, political, military, educational, and

    cultural activities of the Germans in the Ottoman Empire it is evident that the Ottoman

    Empire must be considered in the historiography of German expansionism.

    When expanding into the Ottoman Empire the Germans followed the model

    established by the British. Although deeply involved in the Ottoman Empire, German

    activity was not militaristic or even aggressive. Indeed, the Germans asserted themselves

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    less successfully than the British or the French. Thus, this German expansion into the

    Ottoman Empire simultaneously addresses the question of German exceptionalism.

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    To my brothera finer friend I will never have.

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    All of my scholarly interests and accomplishments have the same origina paper

    I wrote in 1995 on the Nazi Party in Mexico. Professor Arnold Krammer accepted me as

    a project and permitted me to do as much research as I could; before this project I had

    never heard of the National Archives. My friendship and relationship with Professor

    Krammer has prospered since that original project, and I am saddened that the conclusion

    of this dissertation will mean that I am no longer one of his students. In addition to a

    wonderful relationship with Dr. Krammer I have also benefited from the friendship,

    guidance, and demanding requirements of my other committee members. Among those, I

    owe a particular debt to Professor Bob Shandley who discussed dissertation topics with

    me for almost a full year and did far more than I could have expected from a committee

    member from an outside field. Professor Shandley was always willing to lunch, whether

    we were in Germany or College Station, and discuss the dissertation. I am also indebted

    to Professor Chester Dunning who permitted me to work closely with him on Early

    Modern Europe, and who constantly provided me with intellectual and academic

    challenges. Further, Professor Dunning trusted me enough to tell me about the other

    side of academics. We discussed topics ranging from personality conflicts to the always

    difficult academic job market. The purpose of these discussions was sometimes to help

    me avoid problems, but more frequently to help me understand what I was getting myself

    into as I prepared for an academic career. Lastly, I want to thank my friend Professor

    Hank Schmidt. Not only have I taken numerous classes from him, but I always enjoyed

    talking with him about fly-fishing and the Southwest.

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    In addition to a tremendous committee, I have also been fortunate to work for

    professors who took a real interest in my academic and intellectual development.

    Professors Canup, Anderson, Stranges, Adams, and Dunlap provided me with excellent

    opportunities to lecture and teach. I am particularly thankful to Professor Gerald Betty,

    who contributed significantly to this dissertation, to my academic career, and to my

    general disposition. Lastly, I am especially grateful to Professor Jim Rosenheim who, as

    the Director of the Melbern G. Glasscock Center, I came to know quite well. The year I

    spent as a Glasscock Graduate Scholar was the most important intellectual experience of

    my life; during that year I wrote this entire dissertation with the exception of chapter Iand the conclusion. I would not have made such progress without the resources provided

    by the Glasscock Center. I am also grateful to the many friends I developed in graduate

    school, some of whom were my students and others were my colleagues. However,

    without Inna Rodchenko, Sudina Paungpetch, Andy Clink, Thomas Nester, Derrick

    Mallet, Chris Mortenson, Troy Blanton, and Kevin Motl I would not look back on

    graduate school as fondly as I do. I apologize to those whom I hurt when I put school in

    front of themit turns out I was wrong. Lastly, I was also fortunate to have a wonderful

    staff to assist me. However, nearly all of these people became my friends, and I count

    them among my favorite people in the department. Among the most important are Kelly

    Cook, Barbara Dawson, and Judy Mattson. However, a special place will always exist

    for Jude Swank and Annette Turner.

    A graduate education is a luxury, and I would not have been able to enjoy this

    luxury without the support of my family. My parents made a financial and emotional

    investment in my academic career, and I could not have accomplished it without them.

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    ABSTRACT................................................................................................................... iii

    DEDICATION................................................................................................................ v

    ACKNOWLEDGMENTS.............................................................................................. vi

    TABLE OF CONTENTS................................................................................................ ix


    I INTRODUCTION................................................................................... 1II THE HISTORIOGRAPHY OF GERMAN COLONIALISM:

    PROBLEMS AND POTENTIAL.......................................................... 12


    IV THE BRITISH MODEL OF IMPERIALISM IN THE OTTOMANEMPIRE, 1838-1880.............................................................................. 65

    British Economic and Commercial Influence in the OttomanEmpire up to 1878............................................................................ 70British Involvement in Ottoman Construction, Military, andGovernmental Affairs...................................................................... 89British Cultural Imperialism............................................................ 111Conclusion... 121


    German Commercial Imperialism in the Ottoman Empire............ 143

    VI GERMAN POLITICAL IMPERIALISM IN THE OTTOMANEMPIRE, 1877-1908............................................................................ 169

    German Military Relations with the Ottoman Empire.................... 197


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    CHAPTER Page

    VIII CONCLUSION.................................................................................... 234

    REFERENCES............................................................................................................ 246

    VITA............................................................................................................................ 265

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    Article one hundred-fifty five of the Treaty of Versailles, which is located in a

    section of the treaty devoted to German interests in China (articles 128-134), Egypt

    (articles 148-154) and other such territories, reads as follows:

    Germany undertakes to recognize and accept all arrangements whichthe Allied and Associated Powers may make with Turkey and Bulgariawith reference to any rights, interests and privileges whatever whichmight be claimed by Germany or her nationals in Turkey and Bulgaria

    and which are not dealt with in the provisions of the present Treaty.The reference to any rights, interests and privileges whatever might be claimed by

    Germany attests to the unusual imperial relationship that existed between Germany and

    the Ottoman Empire. In spite of this obvious historical reference to the German

    relationship with the Ottoman Empire, historians have largely ignored German activity in

    the Ottoman territories. Thus, this dissertation is a polemic against the conventional

    historiographic understanding of German imperialism.

    Traditionally, historians of German colonialism (there are very few historians

    who consider themselves to be historians of German imperialism, almost all such

    historians use the term colonialism) see the latter as a process begun with Bismarcks

    recognition of German claims in what became German Southwest Africa (1884).

    Moreover, these historians see German colonialism principally in Africa, but also in

    China, and the islands of the Pacific (but generally nowhere else). This dissertation


    This dissertation follows the style ofDiplomatic History.

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    argues that such an understanding of German colonialism is unnecessarily narrow and

    even a distortion. As an example of this expanded notion of imperialism, this dissertation

    uses the Ottoman Empire, and, specifically, a comparative study of British and German

    activities there.

    The notion that colonies are necessary for colonialism/imperialism to exist is a

    relic of the eighteenth-century and, in the nineteenth-century, a poor test of imperial

    activity. Instead, by the nineteenth-century, many of the European powers (and

    increasingly the United States) extended themselves into foreign territories and countries

    without the ambition to settle them or to establish colonies. Rather, in many suchcircumstances (of which the Ottoman Empire is certainly one), the Powers preferred not

    to formally colonize the territory, but instead to control it only to the point necessary to

    achieve specific goals. Indeed, in the Ottoman Empire, the cumulative consequence of a

    system of treaties reached between 1774 and 1856 prohibited any of the Powers from

    establishing colonies in the principal territories of the Ottoman Empire (peripheral

    territories, such as the European territories of the Ottoman Empire and parts of North

    Africa, were viewed differently). In the case of the Ottoman Empire this interest in

    control began with the British, who sought to secure the overland route between the

    Mediterranean and the Red Sea, as the most important route for communications between

    London and India. The British formally established themselves in Gibraltar (1830) and in

    Aden (at the mouth of the Red Sea) (1839), securing two of the three possible choke

    points between London and India, before they established themselves in the Ottoman

    Empire. In establishing this overland route, the British created a model of imperialism

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    that all of the Great Powers, including Germany, used to extend imperialism (and in some

    cases colonialism) into the Ottoman Empire.

    As this dissertation considers German imperialism in the Ottoman Empire, it does

    so by first considering the international conditions that required the British to overcome

    their reticence to establish themselves as an imperial power in the Ottoman Empire.

    After explaining the international conditions that compelled the British to overcome their

    hesitancy to extend into the Ottoman Empire and the system of treaties that prohibited the

    formation of formal colonies, the dissertation then considers the specific model of

    imperialism that the British developed for the Ottoman Empire. This model is importantto the history of modern1imperialism in the Ottoman Empire because it became the

    accepted method for imposing imperial desires on the Ottoman territories without

    upsetting the European balance of power. This British imperial model did not initially

    include formal colonies (in the principal areas of the Ottoman Empire, obviously it did

    include colonies in peripheral Ottoman territories, such as Aden), as the British did not

    make Egypt a protectorate until 1914, but instead dominated the Ottoman government

    (Sublime Porte) without formally imposing a system of colonialism on it. However, the

    British, like the rest of the Great Powers, had positioned themselves for the fall of the

    Ottoman Empire, and, when it fell, the Great Powers (who were already established

    there) became colonial powers (except for the obvious examples of Germany, which lost

    all of its colonial and imperial territory, including the territory in the Ottoman Empire,

    after the First World War, and Russia whose Revolution prohibited imperial expansion).

    1The historiographic question of when modernity arrived in the Middle East is interestingand considered in the footnotes of Chapter II, however it is sufficient here to note thathistorians of the Middle East conventionally (but not universally) agree that the modernera begins in 1800.

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    Understanding this model is important for two additional reasons: first, the British model

    provided the Germans with an established and accepted method to impose themselves on

    the Ottoman Empire; second, British Imperial historiography recognizes this activity in

    the Ottoman Empire as imperial (whereas historians of German colonialism do not, in

    spite of the strong parallels between the activities of the two).

    Some historians have considered this imperialism in the Ottoman Empire, and

    other places, as informal imperialism. This term is intentionally rejected in this

    dissertation, because, it is the contention of this dissertation that the imperialism that

    developed in the Ottoman Empire, by both the British and Germans, was both quiteformal and intentional. However, this imperialism did differ from that of earlier periods.

    What has confused historians and other scholars is the lack of colonies in the principal

    areas of the Ottoman Empire. Somehow, without the immediate establishment of colonies

    the imperialism in these areas becomes informal, and thus less than the imperialism or

    colonialism of earlier periods (and in German history such areas are completely absent

    from the historiography leading to the general conclusion that all German imperial

    activity was colonial; such a position has distorted some of the arguments about the

    nature of German colonialism). What scholars often fail to consider is the long imperial

    incubation that occurred in the Ottoman Empire. While the Great Powers did not

    establish colonies immediately, by the early 1920s, the victorious powers had formal

    colonies in the Ottoman Empire.

    Instead of using a diluted definition of imperialism (such as informal

    imperialism), I contend that the international conditions had changed by the time the

    Germans and the British sought to establish themselves in the Ottoman Empire. These

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    new international conditions made the actual development of colonies undesirable, and,

    instead, emphasized the extension of influence (even dominance) without colonies

    (which were seen as a burden, both financial and logistic). These international conditions

    changed again after the First World War (because of the fall of the Ottoman Empire and

    the new importance of petroleum, which had been discovered in Ottoman territories in

    the earliest years of the twentieth-century).

    The British model for imperialism in the Ottoman Empire (which the Germans

    appropriated almost without change, albeit less successfully) extended British control

    over three principal areas of the Ottoman Empire: first, financial (involving loans to theOttoman government, railway construction, port construction, and trade); second

    governmental (instituting changes to the Ottoman governmental system to facilitate the

    ability of the Sultan to control his empire and for the Europeans to oversee his activities);

    and, third, cultural (the British model brought Ottoman treasure back to the mother

    country to teach imperialism to the citizens). The Germans adopted the British model

    of imperialism for the Ottoman Empire in the 1870s, but never advanced it as far as the

    British did (with the possible exception of the appropriation of artifacts, the Pergamon

    Altar in Berlin is one of the greatest treasures taken from the Ottoman Empire).

    Although this dissertation considers both German and British imperial activity in

    the Ottoman Empire, it is not a history of either. Rather, this dissertation is a polemic

    which contends that the Germans established a formal imperial presence in the Ottoman

    Empire. The principal goal of this dissertation is to convince the reader that it is worth

    considering whether Germany had an imperial presence in the Ottoman Empire and how

    this imperial activity might be accommodated within the historiography of German

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    colonialism. This dissertation shows the German imperial presence in the Ottoman

    Empire comparatively, by first establishing the British model of imperialism and

    illustrating that this British activity is included in the historiography of British

    imperialism. Once British imperialism in the Ottoman Empire has been established, the

    dissertation contends that the Germans developed an imperial system that paralleled

    (intentionally) almost every aspect of British imperialism in the Ottoman Empire (even if

    the Germans were less successful). The dissertation then asks, if the activities of these

    two powers were almost identical (although differing in intensity and success) and one

    (the British) is recognized as imperial, then why is the second example (German) notunderstood as the same?2 Further, the dissertation questions the position of colonies in

    the Ottoman Empire, had the Germans won the First World War, it is entirely reasonable

    to expect them to have established colonies in the Ottoman Empire.

    Consequently, this dissertation challenges the conventional understanding of

    German imperialism in two important ways. First, the dissertation confronts the

    conventional view that the German empire began in 1884; and, second that the German

    Empire existed only in Africa, China, and the Pacific Islands. This dissertation will show

    that German imperialism began significantly earlier than 1884, at least the 1870s, and

    that German imperialism existed beyond this narrow list of German colonial territories.

    Moreover, the dissertation concludes by considering the implications of including the

    Ottoman Empire in the historiographic arguments concerning German imperialism. It is

    expected that the inclusion of the Ottoman Empire will help normalize the German

    imperial experience.

    2No effort is made to deal with the logical question, was British activity in the OttomanEmpire imperial. That has been addressed in the historiography of British imperialism.

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    There is no archive that produced a cache of documents that prompted this

    reconsideration of German imperialism; rather, this dissertation relies on generally well-

    known documents and archival sources that are quite familiar to scholars. Indeed, much

    of the material included in this dissertation is intentionally secondary. The reason for this

    is to illustrate that the argument presented here is not radical, because the materials

    considered here are conventional and well accepted by the community of German

    colonial historians. The primary archival material for this dissertation has been taken

    from the records of the British Foreign Office and the German Foreign Office; these are

    supplemented by contemporary publications addressing British and German imperialism.Although scholars are well acquainted with the records reviewed for this dissertation, this

    dissertation differs from earlier studies because of its comparative context, and the

    attempt to understand imperialism based on nineteenth-century terms rather than

    contemporary ones (as well as the obvious inclusion of the Ottoman Empire).

    The second chapter of the dissertation discusses the historiography of German

    colonialism and the reasons why scholars have focused on colonies as the important test

    of German colonialism. This chapter attempts to provide some meaning to the difficult

    words colonialism and imperialism. Ultimately, the chapter concludes that the use of

    these terms must be considered relative to the historical period that the words are being

    used to describe. Consequently, there can be no useful universal definition of

    colonialism or imperialism; instead, scholars can only define these terms by qualifying

    them, such as nineteenth-century imperialism or seventeenth-century colonialism,

    which were quite different. Moreover, notions of imperialism are based (frequently) on

    the European imperial experience; however, imperialism occurred within the Ottoman

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    Empire without European participation, such imperialism differed importantly from

    European imperial activity. Further complicating an understanding of these terms is the

    problem that they differed, not only based on the people imposing the imperial system,

    but also because of the geographic location where this imperialism was being imposed.

    Imperialism in the Ottoman Empire differed significantly from imperialism in Africa or

    the Arctic (which occurred concurrently with the extension of imperialism into the

    Ottoman Empire). Thus, this dissertation contends that scholars must be even more

    specific, using increasingly detailed qualifiers like nineteenth-century European

    imperialism in the Ottoman Empire if they seek a meaningful definition of the term.Using the definitions from the second chapter concerning the meaning of

    imperialism and colonialism, Chapter III treats the general conditions of the eighteenth-

    and nineteenth-centuries that led the European powers, and specifically Britain, to impose

    this specialized form of imperialism on the Ottoman Empire. The chapter contends that

    the parallel rise in the importance of the overland route between London and India and

    the possibility of the Russians moving into Constantinople compelled the British to exert

    themselves as an imperial power in the Ottoman Empire. Additionally, the chapter

    emphasizes the threat that the Egyptian ruler (although technically Egypt remained part

    of the Ottoman Empire) Mehemet Ali and the French expansion in North Africa posed to

    the continued existence of the Ottoman Empire. These threats required the British to

    establish themselves in the Ottoman Empire and to impose their reluctant imperialism.

    However, the chapter also explains why the international conditions of the period

    prohibited the British from establishing a traditional or formal imperial system (a series

    of treaties signed between 1774 and 1856 aimed at maintaining the European balance of

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    power). The chapter concludes in 1838 with the British ascension to the position of the

    strongest European power in the Ottoman Empire, but does not describe the specifics of

    the British model of imperialism that the Germans appropriated thirty-five years later.

    The importance of understanding the specific reasons for the establishment of the British

    imperialism on the Ottoman Empire is that these conditions defined the manner in which

    the British could impose themselves on the Empire. Because the Germans copied the

    British model so closely, such an understanding concurrently explains German

    imperialism in the Ottoman Empire. Moreover, the same factors that limited the British

    remained in place when the Germans began imposing themselves on the OttomanEmpire.

    The fourth chapter explains the elements of the British model of imperialism. The

    model of British imperial influence in the Ottoman Empire has been divided into three

    components, each concentrating on a specific imperial goal. The three divisions of the

    British model for Ottoman imperialism are: commercial relations, British influence in the

    government of the Ottoman Empire (including British military influence), and the

    teaching of imperialism to the people of Britain. Each of these sub-topics is addressed

    in detail, and they are the basis for comparing British and German activity in the Empire.

    In comparing the German and British imperialism in the Ottoman Empire, these will be

    the specific topics considered.

    Chapter V explains the rise of German financial influence in the Ottoman Empire,

    and the concurrent decline of the British. As the first element in the British model, this

    aspect of German and British imperialism has received significant attention from

    scholars. Specifically, this chapter considers the use of loans and the construction of

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    large capital projects (such as the Anatolian and Baghdad Railway, ports, etc.) to increase

    the Sultans ability to administer his own territories but also to assert European influence

    in the Ottoman Empire. The principal actor in this imperialism wasDeutsche Bank;

    however, its directors were hesitant to invest heavily in the Ottoman Empire, only the

    direct involvement of Kaiser Wilhelm II convinced them to extend the loans. Further, the

    chapter describes the new governmental administrations that permitted the European

    Powers (principally Germany, Britain, and France) to assert their influence in the Empire

    and the conditions that caused the British to reduce their influence, thus permitting the

    Germans an opportunity to become increasingly involved.Chapter VI is a specific consideration of German involvement in the

    governmental administration of the Ottoman Empire. While the previous chapter

    addressed the involvement of the Germans in the financial aspects of the Ottoman

    government, this chapter describes the German effort to bring the Ottoman military to the

    standards of nineteenth-century European armies, both through training and through arms

    sales. Because the Ottoman government did not separate military and civil duties,

    influence in the military had immediate political consequences. Further, the chapter

    considers the growth of German influence in the Ottoman Empire that developed from

    Kaiser Wilhelms two visits to the Near East. As the first sitting monarch to visit

    Constantinople, where he declared himself to be the protector of the worlds Muslims,

    Wilhelms visit to the Ottoman Empire catalyzed the German position in the Ottoman


    The seventh chapter examines German cultural imperialism. Specifically, this

    chapter considers the German appropriation and display of Ottoman artifacts, as well as

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    the growing interest in teaching Oriental languages and the influence of Oriental

    architecture in nineteenth-century Germany. Moreover, the chapter also considers the

    interest in archaeological discovery and the importance related to it (both in Germany and

    internationally). The work of Heinrich Schliemann, as well as the discovery of the

    Pergamon Altar and the Ishtar Gates, made Germany one of the premiere centers for the

    study of Ottoman artifacts. Further, a discussion of the ability of the German public to

    see these artifacts (in the context of the work of Glenn Penny and Suzanne Zantop) will

    also be included.

    Chapter VIII will conclude the dissertation and is specifically intended toincorporate the Ottoman Empire into the historiography of German imperialism. Many

    of the debates about German imperialism and German political affairs identify Germany

    as an aberration; however, this dissertation contends that the Germans were well within

    the recognized imperial activity of the period (and possibly even less aggressive than the

    French or the British). Additionally, the historiography of German imperialism discusses

    topics such as the motivation for the sudden rise in German colonial activity in 1884.

    This dissertation contends that this rise was neither sudden nor in 1884. Thus, the

    conclusion of this dissertation is devoted to reassessing the historiography of German

    colonialism and questioning the established historigoraphic debates.

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    Modern German Colonialism, 1871-1885, concludes with a chapter entitled The

    National Inauguration of Colonialism, where she contends that German colonial efforts

    culminated in the transformative year of 1884-1885.5

    The conventional historiography of German colonialism does not include a debate

    concerning the question of what constituted German colonial territory; instead, historians

    have generally accepted the contention that Africa, the Pacific islands, and China

    comprised the entirety of German imperial territory. This lack of debate means that

    historians have focused on other components of the colonial historiography. Of the

    various other topics that German colonial historians have considered, the most importantare the arguments that developed within the broader field of German history from the

    works of Fritz Fischer and Hans-Ulrich Wehlerneither of whom considered

    themselves, specifically, colonial historians. While these scholars generally did not

    publish on German colonialism, the scope and intensity of the arguments they introduced

    affected the writing of German colonial history, as it did nearly every other sub-genre of

    nineteenth- and twentieth-century German history.

    Publishing his most famous work in 1961, Griff nach der Weltmacht (Grab for

    World Power, entitled somewhat blandly Germanys Aims in the First World War in its

    English translation), Fritz Fischer incited what became known as the Fischer

    Controversy. Influenced by the then obscure work of Eckart Kehr, Fischer jettisoned the

    constraints of Rankean history and insisted on the consideration of economic and social

    5Mary Townsend, The Origins of Modern German Colonialism, 1871-1885(New York:Columbia University Press, 1921). Authors writing in the years immediately followingthe First World War wrote about German imperialism outside of this narrowunderstanding of German imperialism. See for example: Edward Mead Earle, Turkey,the Great Powers, and the Bagdad Railway: A Study in Imperialism(New York:MacMillan Company, 1923).

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    explanations for historical events, most notably the origins of the First World War.

    Fischer asserted, in his principal claim, that Germany intentionally precipitated the First

    World War in order to assure itself of world power through an extended colonial

    empire and the consolidation of the state at home. Although he did not specifically

    intend to write a book on German colonial history, his topic necessitated a consideration

    of the latter. Fischer did not overtly claim a broad imperial goal for Germany, beyond

    what historians generally recognize (i.e. Africa, some Pacific Islands and China);

    however, he emphasized the expansionist policy of the Imperial German government.

    The importance he placed on expansionism included considerations of German efforts tosecure coaling stations in Yemen, German interests in expanding within Europe, German

    expansionist policy towards the Ottoman Empire, and British concerns with German

    expansion around India.6 Consequently, while Fischer did not develop a broader context

    in which German imperialism existed, he recognized the German expansionist goals

    beyond the traditional German colonies and the significance that other European states

    (especially Britain, Russia, and France) attributed to this. However, the most important

    contribution of Fischers work, for German colonial historians, is the emancipation from

    the limitations of Rankean history that traditionally bound German historiography. This

    newly accepted freedom stimulated a generation of scholarship, which embraced social,

    cultural, and other non-traditional historiographic approaches.7

    6Bruce Waller, Hans-Ulrich Wehler on Imperial Germany,British Journal ofInternational Studies1 (1975): 60-64.

    7Waller, 60-63.

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    Among the scholars emancipated from the Rankean limitations was Hans-Ulrich

    Wehler, who published a series of books, most notably The German Empire, 1871-1918

    andBismarck und der Imperialismus(Bismarck and Imperialism), that further catalyzed

    debate within the historiography of German colonialism. Instead of considering Wehlers

    many books individually, it is prudent to summarize his contributions to German colonial

    historiography. While Wehler is best known for his arguments in the historiographic

    debate concerning the German Sonderweg, he made an important contribution to the

    colonial historiography by acknowledging that Bismarck likely did not simply decide to

    embrace colonialism in 1884 as many historians contend.


    Instead, Wehler argues thatBismarcks interest in colonialism developed earlier, from his experiences in the

    Depression of 1873. Wehler further contends that Bismarck anticipated that colonies

    would moderate swings in the German economy by providing a market for surplus goods,

    a source of natural resources, etc.9 Bismarcks efforts to secure stability for the newly

    formed Reich also influenced large components of Wehlers most contentious arguments,

    commonly referred to as social imperialism and negative integration.10 For Wehler,

    Germanys aggressive, expansionist, and imperialistic activities became Bismarcks tool

    for re-directing pressures for further domestic political emancipation abroad (giving rise

    8Ibid., 61.

    9Ibid., 62-63.

    10Social Imperialism is essentially the idea that colonies could contribute or evenachieve German national unification (after political unification in 1871) by becoming adistraction to the existing class conflicts in the newly established Germany. NegativeIntegration referred to a similar idea, one in which the Germans problems would besolved by identifying enemies of the state at home and rallying the rest of the countryagainst them (such as Catholics or Socialists).

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    to the idea ofprimat der Innenpolitik, or the primacy of domestic politics, which differed

    dramatically from the foreign policy focus of the Rankean historians).11

    While Fischer and Wehler catalyzed a renaissance in German colonial

    historiography, their work focused German colonial historians on specific questions, such

    as the feasibility of social imperialism, in the case of Wehler, and the German intention

    to go to war in 1914 and the significance of colonial possessions in that decision, in the

    case of Fischer, instead of on the problem of the limited conception of German colonial

    activity. However, the work of these historians re-energized the debate about nineteenth-

    century German history and the German imperial system. Moreover, the renunciation ofthe Rankean limitations permitted latter historians to consider a wider array of evidence

    and topics.

    The historiographic furor that Fischer and Wehler unleashed dominated nearly all

    of German history in western Europe, the United States, and above all West Germany.

    However, its influence in the East (especially East Germany) is not as evident. One

    reason that the significance of Fischer and Wehler is less apparent in the colonial history

    written in the DDR is that the historians of the DDR had devoted themselves to a study of

    colonialism since the early 1950s, and, thus, their interest in nineteenth-century German

    imperialism (and colonialism) predated Fischer. However, as previously stated, Western

    historians did not commonly devote themselves to the study of German imperialism until

    11Waller, 65. Many historians have dedicated themselves to the question of thedominance ofInnenpolitikorAuenpolitikin German motivations for colonial orimperial expansion. However, these historians have failed to consider that Germanimperial expansion paralleled that of the British and the French quite strongly. TheGerman activities in the imperial realm were hardly aberrant, instead in many ways, aswill be shown, remained quite in line with the activities of other European powers.

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    after the publication of Fischers famous book in 1961. Unfortunately, the East German

    combination of Marxist dogma and the contemporary political interest in depicting West

    Germany as the successor to Nazism (which connected it directly to the Kaiserriech)12

    distracted historians from debating the broad parameters of German colonial history.13

    While the historians of East Germany dedicated themselves to the issues of German

    colonialism, the ideological component of much of their work ultimately proved

    unfounded. Consequently, these texts did not contribute to the historiography as fully as

    they might have.

    In spite of the innovations of Fischer and Wehler as well as the contributions byEast German historians, the historiography of German colonialism remains fettered by

    the contention that German colonial activity existed exclusively in the period between

    1884 and 1918 and in only in Africa, China, and the Pacific. Indeed, historians have

    concluded that German activity in the Ottoman Empire, while impressive, specifically

    failed to rise to the level necessary to constitute imperialism.14 In spite of the real

    12Woodruff D. Smith, Colonialism and Colonial Empire, inImperial Germany: AHistoriographical Companion,ed. Roger Chickering (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press,1996), 429-431 (hereafter cited as Smith, Colonialism and Colonial Empire,).Regrettably, historians are just beginning to consider the significance of the FischerControversy in the DDR. See Matthew Stibbe, The Fischer Controversy over GermanWar Aims in the First World War and its Reception by East German Historians, 1961-1989,Historical Journal46 (2003): 649-668.

    13Smith Colonialism and Colonial Empire, 430.

    14Donald McKale, War by Revolution: Germany and Great Britain in the Middle East inthe Era of World War I(Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 1998); GregorSchllgen,Imperialismus und Gleichgewicht: Deutschland, England, und dieorientalische Frange, 1871-1914(Munich: Oldenbourg, 1984); Lora Wildenthal, GermanWomen for Empire, 1884-1945(London: Duke University Press, 2001), 1-2; Smith,Colonialism and Colonial Empire, 430, Smith includes the following list of colonialterritories: Africa, the Pacific, and Asia (i.e. China). A very recent dissertation laments

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    limitations on the understanding of what comprises German imperialism, there is an

    evolving component of the historiography that has contributed to the expansion of the

    understanding of what German colonialism and imperialism entailed. However, even

    these scholars have failed to broaden the consideration of German imperial activity

    adequately. The scholars who represent this group of historians include: Suzanne

    Marchand, Susanne Zantop, Glenn Penny, Mary Louise Pratt, Nina Berman, Nancy

    Mitchell, Woodruff Smith, and Mack Walker.15

    The most relevant historiographic argument to develop from the work of this

    group of historians (relevant for this dissertation) addresses significance of the

    the relatively little known aspects of the German engagement in the Near East prior toWorld War I. See: S.M. Can Bilsel,Architecture in the Museum: Displacement,Reconstruction, and Reproduction of the Monuments of Antiquity in Berlins PergamonMuseum(Ph.D. diss., Princeton University, 2003), 32. One recent history of the BaghdadRailway described the German motivation for becoming involved in the Ottoman Empirein the following way: Unlike their competitors [the British and the French], the Germansworking in Istanbul chose to interact with the Ottomans to help place the empire back onits feet. Jonathan S. McMurray,Distant Ties: Germany, the Ottoman Empire, and theConstruction of the Baghdad Railway (Westport, Connecticut: Praeger, 2001), 32. It istrue that the Germans sought the continued existence of the Ottoman Empire; however, aswill be shown, this was part of the established model for imperialism in the OttomanEmpire. Because formal colonies could not be developed in the principal areas of theOttoman Empire, the European Powers asserted imperial influence within the existingstate. Once the Powers had an influential position in the Ottoman state they sought toprotect that position by sustaining the Ottoman state.

    15Scholars such as Penny, Zantop, and Pratt are principally concerned with reconsideringthe elements of colonialism (i.e. not just planting a flag, but also the display of colonialartifacts). Other scholars, such as Smith, are more conventional historians of Germancolonialism. This dissertation chiefly considers these separately, first by definingcolonialism and imperialism, and then by considering the culture of colonialism(among other aspects of colonialism and imperialism). What distinguishes the historiansof the culture of colonialism (such as Zantop) is that they address German colonialismand imperialism before 1884. The idea of representation receives the most attention inthis chapter because it is the only topic that has been addressed by several of thesehistorians.

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    representation16of the colonial (often centered on Latin America) in Germany. This

    contribution is relevant to the argument presented here because, finding imperialism in

    the Ottoman Empire requires considering unorthodox methods of imposing and teaching

    imperialism. This group of authors contends that colonial and imperial ambitions and

    activities can be discerned from the display of foreign objects in Germany. Suzanne

    Zantop prompted this debate with her Colonial Fantasies: Conquest, Family and Nation

    in Precolonial Germany, 1770-1870.17 Zantops well-received work is part of a larger

    field of social science research in which scholars consider the implications and

    didacticism of the display of colonial artifacts around the world.


    Zantop is hardly alonein this field as other scholars within the fields of German history and cultural studies,

    such as Nicholas Thomas,19have also devoted themselves to the study of this culture of

    colonialism. These scholars emphasize the importance of moving away from defining

    colonialism or imperialism exclusively as political or economic domination and instead

    towards a more nuanced and less rigid understanding. Zantop uses this expanded

    understanding of colonialism to consider the representation of Latin America in an

    16This notion of representation is quite broad, Zantop considers the representation ofliterary works while Penny, and others place more emphasis on objects. The differencesin the objects necessitates somewhat different interpretations of them.

    17Suzanne Zantop, Colonial Fantasies: Conquest, Family, and Nation in PrecolonialGermany, 1770-1870(Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1997).

    18John Noyes, Colonial Space: Spatiality in the Discourse of German South West Africa1884-1915(Philadelphia: Harwood Academic Publishers, 1992). Noyes addressessimilar material, by considering the relationship between literature and the colonizationof German Southwest Africa, there are however many other historians who haveaddressed this topic.

    19Nicholas Thomas, Colonialisms Culture: Anthropology, Travel and Government(Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1994), 2.

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    impressively broad array of nineteenth-century German books, pamphlets, plays,

    childrens literature, magazines, etc.

    Using these literary sources, Zantop argues that Germany established a colonial

    fantasy with Latin America. Zantop focuses her study on the colonial fantasy instead

    of colonialism, because for most of the period that she studied, Germany (of course

    Germanyper se did not exist, but instead of considering the different German states she

    uses Germany) did not have formal colonies in Latin America (importantly, her work is

    concerned with formal colonialism, meaning actual colonies and she formally rejects the

    use of imperialism, preferring to use colonialism almost exclusively).


    According toZantop, the Germans established colonial fantasies because they did not participate

    formally in the colonial partition of Latin America. Instead of establishing formal

    colonies, eighteenth- and nineteenth-century German scientists, authors, political

    theorists, anthropologists, etc. all observed and then incorporated aspects of this Spanish

    (and British) colonialism into the literature of their specific discipline. These authors

    contributed to the colonial fantasy because they conventionally concentrated on the

    negative aspects of Spanish or British colonialism and emphasized the ability of German

    colonizers to have conducted this colonization less brutally, or in her words, to have been

    superior colonizers.

    20Zantop, 9. She writes I prefer to use the terms colonialism and colonialfantasies,Since I focus on fantasies, not actions, and since these fantasies are informedpredominantly by a settlement rather than an economic exploitation ideology, colonialseems to be the more appropriate label. After this point, Zantop does not considerimperialistic or economic manifestations of imperialism, although she does not appear todoubt their existence either.

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    Zantop furthers her argument by introducing the powerful image of Alexander

    von Humboldt. According to Zantop (in an argument also advocated by Mary Louise

    Pratt21), Humboldts famous journey and writings made him a second Columbus,

    discovering a new Latin America for the Germans. This new Latin America evolved

    from Humboldts scientific and highly descriptive writings on the previously largely

    unexplored interior of the continent. While the lack of colonies necessarily drove these

    fantasies, examples of lost opportunities, such as Humboldt and the Fuggar and the

    Welser merchant and banking families, also contributed to the development of these

    fantasies. According to the colonial fantasy, these lost opportunities providedevidence that the Germans would have been more benevolent colonizers. The

    importance of these colonial fantasies (especially with individuals like Humboldt and

    the Wesler and Fuggar families) is that the Germans developed a myth that they were

    superior colonizers, which eventually led to a moral entitlement for actual German

    colonization.22 Ultimately, Zantop concludes that the representation of Latin America,

    through the literature of colonial fantasies, propelled and even dominated the eventual

    development of German colonies, even if these future colonies were not in Latin


    Glenn Penny contends that many scholars (including Zantop) who study the

    representation of colonialism in nineteenth-century Germany oversimplify German

    motivations. He acknowledges that these representations of the wider world (be it

    21Mary Louise Pratt,Imperial Eyes: Travel Writing and Transculturation(New York:Routledge, 1992), 111-143.

    22Zantop, 202.

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    through literature, which Zantop studied, or through the artifacts that Penny considers) in

    Germany had limited imperial appeal, but contends there is a richer context in which to

    understand the foreign artifacts displayed in Germany.23 The most important alternative

    explanation for Penny is the international ethnographic movement that characterized the

    middle and late nineteenth-century. According to Penny, viewing Latin American

    artifacts in Germany as purely colonial would be inappropriate, because, according his

    argument, they constituted a component of a broader effort by the Germans (as well as

    the rest of Western Europe) to develop a comprehensive knowledge of the rest of the

    world through museums dedicated to ethnology (Vlkerkunde). The creation ofethnographic museums to display such objects did not advocate for colonialism because

    artifacts in these museums came from literally all over the world, meaning that if they are

    to be viewed as colonial, then this claim for colonialism is impossibly broad. Instead,

    these objects fulfilled an intellectual and scientific purpose, and that this appropriation

    and display of artifacts was an international phenomenon during the nineteenth-century.

    Pennys convincing argument concerning the representation and display of

    foreign objects requires qualification. The general subject of colonial exhibitions is well

    developed in the broad historiography of colonialism; many historians who have written

    on colonialism place tremendous importance on the display of colonial artifacts for both

    23H. Glenn Penny, Objects of Culture: Ethnology and Ethnographic Museums inImperial German,(Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2002), 11-20.Admittedly, Penny and Zantop address different colonial materials, Zantop considersliterature and Penny artifacts and contemporary cultural pieces. While their argumentsare not precisely the same because Zantop considers objects created in Germany, whilePenny considers objects created in potentially colonial territory they do intersect becauseof their ultimate conclusions; Penny contends there was no colonial effort in Germanybefore 1880 and Zantop considers the pre-colonial Germany essential to thedevelopment of colonial Germany.

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    foreign and domestic audiences.24 Consequently, while Pennys argument has validity

    and the reality of the ethnographic museums was that they were places where many

    scientific and other non-colonial activities occurred, it cannot be forgotten that the

    objects displayed there (or at least some of them, especially those artifacts from the

    Ottoman Empire) may have had an imperial function as well. Although some of these

    objects may have been tools of scientific discovery, other objects displayed in

    ethnographic museums could not escape an imperialistic context (especially those items

    from the Ottoman Empire).

    One of the problems with considering the work of scholars like Penny and Zantopis the necessity of understanding the meaning of, and the relationship between, the terms

    imperialism and colonialism. Many scholars inattentively use these terms

    interchangeably; however, more precise writers distinguish between the two. The

    malleability of these two words both in the context of the contemporary event and in the

    scholarship of later historians is problematic; however, historians have established

    conventional definitions.25 These accepted understandings of colonialism and

    imperialism (and especially the relationship between the two) contribute to an

    appreciation of why the conception of German imperialism has often been so narrow.

    24James R. Ryan, Picturing Empire: Photography and the Visualization of the BritishEmpire(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1997); Anne Maxwell, ColonialPhotography and Exhibitions: Representations of the Native and the Making ofEuropean Identities(London: Leicester University Press, 1999). While Ryan andMaxwell address somewhat different objects than Penny, they (Maxwell and Ryan) aresufficiently similar to be considered in the same context as Penny. There are many otherbooks in this category, but Ryan and Maxwell are a sufficient representation.

    25Claiming that these definitions are conventional for the field is likely an overstatement.It is clear that certain sub-fields of the discipline defer to this definition.

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    Conventionally, it is understood that colonialism means the acquisition of colonies and

    that a colonial policy leads to imperialism, which is traditionally understood as initially a

    protective policy for the colonies and then, in the nineteenth-century, an aggressive

    economic policy.26 In this generally accepted interpretation, colonialism must precede

    imperialism; while historians do not often call this the British model, it is too heavily

    dependent on the early imperial and colonial experiences of the British (and other early

    colonizers). Indeed, in the nineteenth-century, the United States specifically claimed that

    its model of imperialism was exceptional and different from Europes and more

    morally acceptable.


    Edward Said recently reversed this relationship contending thatimperialism, which he defines as the practice, the theory, and the attitudes of a

    dominating metropolitan center ruling a distant territory, leads to colonialism, which to

    him means the implanting of settlements on distant territory. Further, Said claims that

    while direct colonialism has largely ended [meaning in contemporary society];

    imperialismlingers where it has always been, in a kind of general cultural sphere as

    well as in specific political, ideological, economic, and social practices.28

    A further problem in establishing a definition for the words imperialism and

    colonialism is that the meaning of these words changes depending on the geographic area

    and the historical period that one considers. Even the relationship between these words

    (i.e. which one comes first) is relative to the historical period and area being considered.

    26Zantop, 8-9. Edward Said, Culture and Imperialism(New York: Alfred A. Knopf,1993), xi-11 (hereafter cited as Said, Culture and Imperialism).

    27Maxwell, 6. Maxwell references Said for this, so it may also be useful to see: Said,Culture and Imperialism, 350.

    28Said, Culture and Imperialism, 9.

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    potentially related) concerns; second, a comparative method with the imperial activity of

    the British, French, Russian, and other major powers. Specifically, after developing a

    model of British imperialism for the Ottoman Empire, German activity relative to this

    model will be gauged, and, thus, an assessment of German imperialism in the Ottoman

    Empire can be made. It will be argued that in the case of the Ottoman Empire, German

    activity paralleled Saids understanding of imperialism and colonialism but that

    circumstances prevented the Germans from establishing formal colonies (the First World

    War); however, the failure of colonialism to follow imperialism does not invalidate the

    imperialism of the earlier period.


    The use of a comparative model to test for the presence of German imperialism in

    the Ottoman Empire in the nineteenth-century is important because, by the eighteen-

    fifties, the European Powers (with limited exceptions such as Africa) seized fewer formal

    colonies and, thus, imperialism after eighteen-fifty differed from earlier nineteenth-

    century imperialism. In spite of these differences, British imperial activity in the

    Ottoman Empire has been generally recognized as such, even if the Crown failed to

    establish formal colonies. The decision not to establish formal colonies is not unexpected

    (by historians) as a growing British disinterest in additional colonies is illustrated by the

    fact that not only did the British seize colonies more carefully and less frequently after

    eighteen-fifty, but they also increasingly permitted their established colonies self-

    government and even autonomy under the crown. Canada is an example of this

    29Bernard Porter, The Lions Share: A Short History of British Imperialism, 2nded. (NewYork: Longman Press, 1977), 2-28.

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    increasing autonomy;30but, by the 1860s, nearly all of Australia governed itself, as did

    New Zealand, and to a lesser degree the Cape Colony.31 The reason the British were

    willing to permit their colonies (except India) increasing autonomy was that many British

    officials recognized that the benefits of direct colonial rule no longer justified the

    expense.32 However, in spite of both the increasing autonomy permitted for the

    established colonies and the growing disinterest in establishing new colonies, the British

    simultaneously continued to expand their global imperial presence. The parallels

    between the extension of German and British imperial influence in places like the

    Ottoman Empire (without colonies) makes a comparative study of this phenomenaparticularly viable. Consequently, by comparing British and German imperial

    experiences, through a definition of imperialism that accounts for the historical context of

    events in the nineteenth-century Ottoman Empire, scholars will not only expand the

    understanding of German imperialism, but they may also recognize that German imperial

    ambition and activity remained solidly within the practices of other European states (i.e.

    by extending influence without establishing large colonies).

    One of the most effective tools for a comparison of British and German imperial

    activity in the Ottoman Empire is the idea of the imperialism of free trade, which has

    30D. George Boyce,Decolonization and the British Empire, 1775-1997(New York: St.Martins Press, 1999), 28-39. This is an oversimplification, there were many problems inCanada, not the least of which was the conflict between the descendants of the Englishand the French, and many solutions were considered, of which increased autonomy andself-government was one (and ultimately, the one that persevered).

    31Porter, 16.

    32Boyce, 43-46. The British recognition of the expense of maintaining colonies was sowell recognized that there was a minor movement for the British to abandon most of theircolonial possessions.

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    dominated British imperial historiography with its contention that the British were

    reluctant colonizers. The scholars most associated with the idea of the imperialism of

    free trade are Ronald Robinson and Jack Gallagher,33whose so-called Gallagher and

    Robinson Controversy dominated the historiography of British colonialism from the

    1950s until the 1980s. Gallagher and Robinson contend that the conventional

    understanding of nineteenth-century British imperialism (i.e. the pre-1953

    historiography) minimized the continuity of British imperial activity by claiming that in

    the latter nineteenth-century British imperial ambitions flagged because (in the latter

    nineteenth-century) the British seized fewer colonies and did so with apparently greatercaution. Gallagher and Robinson reject this claim (that a decrease in the establishment of

    colonies equated to a growing disinterest in imperialism) and argue that British imperial

    activity existed, with significant continuity, throughout the nineteenth-century, through

    this imperialism of free trade, even if the British seized colonies less frequently.34

    Gallagher and Robinson contend, in what is likely their most frequently quoted

    statement, that British policy followed the principle of extending control informally if

    possible [i.e. through free trade agreements] and formally if necessary.35Consequently,

    while the British did not often overtly seize land after the 1860s (of course, they did

    participate in the Scramble for Africa as well as seize land elsewhere, but this does not

    33John Gallagher and Ronald Robinson, The Imperialism of Free Trade, EconomicHistory Review, Second Series, 6 (1953): 1-15. Also see, John Gallagher, RonaldRobinson and Alice Denny,Africa and the Victorians: The Official Mind of Imperialism,(London: MacMillan, 1981); William Roger Louis (ed.),Imperialism: The Robinson andGallagher Controversy(New York: New Viewpoints Books, 1976).

    34Louis, 3-5.

    35Robinson and Gallagher,Africa and the Victorians, xxi.

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    invalidate the argument) Gallagher and Robinson claim that this represented only a minor

    deviation from the established British imperial tradition. Further, when the British did

    seize territory, such as Egypt in 1881 (although Egypt remained, formally, within the

    Ottoman Empire until 1914), Gallagher and Robinson contend that local or domestic

    events (i.e. events in the eventual colony) triggered the colonization, instead of a British

    ambition to establish formal colonies. The argument that Gallagher and Robinson

    present is that if the British had an option, they preferred not to move along Saids path

    from imperialism to colonialism; it was only when domestic political activity (in the

    imperial territory) necessitated direct colonization that the British established a formalcolonial presence. According to Gallagher and Robinson, this informal imperialism

    that the British reportedly preferred could manifest itself in the following ways:


    The exertion of power or diplomacy to impose and sustain free trading conditionson another society against its will;

    2) the exertion of capital or commercial attraction to bend economic organizationand direction of growth in directions complementary to the needs and surpluses ofthe expanding economy;

    3) the exertion of capital and commercial attraction directly upon foreigngovernments to influence them toward cooperation and alliance with theexpanding country;

    4) the direct intervention or influence of the export-import sector interests upon thepolitics of the receiving country in the direction of collaboration and political-economic alliance with the expanding power;

    5) the taking over by European bankers and merchants of sectors of non-Europeandomestic economies under cover of imposed free trade without accompaniment oflarge capital or export inputs from Europe, as in China.36

    The model established by Robinson and Gallagher has not seriously been considered

    within the context of German imperial and colonial activity, in spite of the fact that it

    appears to be quite adaptable to contemporary German imperial activities. While

    36Louis, 3-5.

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    Gallagher and Robinson have been properly criticized on many points of their argument

    (and especially on the contention that domestic conflict catalyzed, and sometimes even

    required, the establishment of British colonies), its core emphasis on recognizing

    imperialism without the presence of colonies means that German activity in the Ottoman

    Empire should be evaluated against this model.37The official disinterest that the German

    government had in the establishment of colonies (under Bismarck) makes a comparison

    with imperial activity especially appealing.

    This expansion of our understanding of colonialism and imperialism necessitates

    that historians also begin to question the assertion that April 1884 constituted a clearbeginning to German imperial history. In spite of his public arguments against colonies,

    Bismarck, in April 1884, sent a message directing his officials in Africa to publish notice

    of the German protection of what was to become German Southwest Africa.

    Predictably, many histories of German colonialism have seized this and begin with some

    derivation of the following: On April 24, 1884, Bismarck, chancellor of the then

    thirteen-year old German Empire, sent a cable to the German consul in Cape Town to

    proclaim imperial protection over the territories38 The acceptance of 1884 as the

    37There are problems and limitations to this theory, but its main contention that theBritish were reluctant colonizers remains an accepted notion in British imperialhistoriography. Instead of becoming focused on Robinson and Gallagher, thisdissertation will use the argument that the British were reluctant colonialists and the waysin which informal imperialism can be established, but will not make arguments aboutthe most contentious aspect of the controversy, the idea that peripheral crises led tocolonization. Further, this dissertation explicitly rejects the notion of informalimperialism because, it will be argued, this imperialism was a formal government policyand, thus, quite intentional, all that differentiates it from intentional imperialism is alack of colonies.

    38Zantop, 1. Zantops book is one of the few books that addresses the realities ofGerman colonial interests before 1884, but she still contends this is a precolonial

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    beginning of German colonialism has almost universal approval within the community of

    German historians. However, to accept this, historians must be willing to ignore German

    (and especially Prussian) expansion within Europe, as well as German imperial activity in

    the Ottoman Empire.

    An additional element that makes 1884 appear as a less plausible beginning for

    German imperialism is that when historians begin their books with some statement about

    24 April 1884 they cannot quote the headlines of theNew York Times or the Times

    (London);39the reason that historians cannot cite major headlines from these papers is

    that the papers did not report the alleged change in German colonial policy. On 27 June1884 (in the first story devoted to German colonialism in that year), theNew York Times

    flatly stated There was a lively discussion of Germanys colonial policy in the Reichstag

    today in connection with the consideration of the proposed treaty of commerce with

    Corea [sic.] and40 The Times(London) is similarly mute on the alleged change in

    German imperial policy, reporting on 2 May 1884 about the German fear of trichinosis

    from American pork, and on 24 June about the appropriation of funds to increase the

    number of steamers to Australia and China.41 Had 1884 signified a major transition in

    German colonial policy, it is reasonable to expect that either British or American

    Germany, and thus she still sees 1884 as a seminal change in German colonial history.Also see: Smith Colonialism and Colonial Empire, 430. Smith is one of the mostestablished historians of German colonialism.

    39To my knowledge no historical treatment of German colonialism begins with anewspaper article but I have not reviewed each one.

    40Germanys Colonial Policy,New York Times27 June 1884, 1:4.

    41Germany, Times (London), 2 May 5, 2005, 5:c; and German Colonial Policy,Times(London), 24 June 1884, 5:c-d.

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    newspapers would have reported this change. In fact there is no announcement in the

    principal newspapers of either country that claims that Germany suddenly became a

    colonial power.

    The purpose of this dissertation is to argue that German imperialism did not begin

    with Bismarcks recognition of colonial territories in Africa in April 1884 and that it is

    equally inappropriate for historians to accept the traditional geographic boundaries of

    German colonialism. Instead, it will be argued that German imperialism existed in the

    Ottoman Empire before 1884. While German imperial activity in the Ottoman Empire

    does not adhere to the traditional models or definitions of imperialism, it does provideevidence of imperialism (and to some degree colonialism) outside of the generally

    accepted areas of German colonial activity (i.e. China, Africa, and the Pacific).

    To sustain this argument several components of the history must be considered;

    consequently, this dissertation will attempt to make use of the resources of political as

    well as social history. Using the work of Zantop and related scholars as a model, selected

    writings on the Ottoman Empire will be considered as indicators of imperial activity.

    However, in the case of the Ottoman Empire the discovery, appropriation, and display of

    Ottoman artifacts (especially the Pergamon Alter and Heinrich Schliemanns discovery of

    Troy) will also be considered. Further, these unorthodox indications of imperialism will

    be complemented by documents from theAuswrtiges Amt. Within this context it will

    also be argued that the failure of imperialism to turn into colonialism (especially in the

    case of the Ottoman Empire) does not mean that German activity in that area should not

    be considered within the historical context of German colonial history.

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    The use of a comparative study of British imperialism will also be important in

    considering claims that German activity was imperial. This is especially important as

    British imperialists recognized the influence that the Germans were beginning to exert in

    the Ottoman Empire and competed with the latter for influence in the Ottoman Empire.

    Further, as British imperial historians have considered the activity in the Ottoman Empire

    as imperial, providing evidence that German activity there paralleled (strongly) that of

    the British increases the basis for considering German activity in the Ottoman Empire as

    imperial. The fact that the Germans had political or economic relations with a less

    powerful country is not sufficient to claim that the Germans had an imperial policytowards that country; it is important that an expanded definition of imperialism does not

    develop into an impossibly broad idea.

    Thus, by considering a variety of archives and documents, it will be argued that

    historians have misunderstood the richness of German imperialism. Instead of focusing

    on the narrow group of territories that developed into formal German colonies, historians

    must consider the entire context of German imperialism. Using the Ottoman Empire as

    an example, it will be shown that the spectrum of German imperialism is broader and

    richer than most historians accept.

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    the 1820s; after this development the most important communications route between

    England and India became the overland route.43 This route, formally established in

    1839, but in existence for at least ten years before that, sent British ships into the

    Mediterranean, to Egypt, overland to Suez, and then into the Red Sea. This route became

    important in the 1830s because, before the development of steam ships, the British

    considered sailing in the Red Sea too risky.44With the development of interest in the

    overland route, the British established themselves at the three critical strategic locations

    from which other powers could have interrupted British communications with India (the

    Straits of Gibraltar, the overland parts of the Ottoman Empire, and Bab el Mandeb, thestrait between the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, see Map One). This

    commercial concern. Instead of considering commercial concerns as the reason forBritish activity in the Ottoman Empire, this dissertation uses geopolitical strategicconcerns.

    43Halford Lancaster Hoskins,British Routes to India, (1928; reprint, New York: OctagonBooks, 1966), 266. While Hoskins book is nearly eighty years old, it has evidently notbeen surpassed. Many texts (as recently as 2004) cite it as the best authority on the topic.Although the route around the Cape of Good Hope remained popular for bulk goods andless urgent business, the overland route became the most important link betweenEngland and India. Also see, The Overland Route to India, Times(London), 18October 1838, 3:c.

    44Thomas E. Marston,Britains Imperial Role in the Red Sea Area, 1800-1871(Hamden,Connecticut: The Shoe String Press, 1961), 64. This route cut the time to send a letterand receive a response from two years to a little over one-hundred days (providedimmediate turn around), see: Robert J. Blyth, Aden, British India and the Developmentof Steam Power in the Red Sea, 1825-1839, inMaritime Empires: British ImperialMaritime Trade in the Nineteenth-Century, ed. David Killingray, Margarette Lincoln, andNigel Rigby (Rodchester, New York: The Boydell Press, 2004), 68-69 and 75.

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    Figure One. Map of Strategic British Positions.45

    45Central Intelligence Agency, The World Factbook(Washington, DC: Government

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    process began in 1830 with the formal inclusion of Gibraltar in the British Empire,46and

    continued with the seizure of Aden, at the mouth the Red Sea (1839). However, the

    establishment of British administration in Gibraltar and at the mouth of the Red Sea

    provided the British only two of the three strategic points necessary to protect their

    overland route. To secure this route the British also had to establish themselves in the

    Ottoman Empire, where Russia (by 1833), was the dominant power. While the British

    could not formally colonize the Ottoman Empire (and no evidence exists to indicate they

    wanted to, specifically why the British could not do so is explained below) they needed to

    control portions (and make sure that Russia would not extend its influence there ordestabilize the Ottoman government) of it to be certain that they could maintain their

    communications with India; this was the first step in the establishment of the British

    model of imperialism in the Ottoman Empire. Thus, in the 1830s, the British initiated a

    series of diplomatic maneuvers that culminated in their replacing Russia as the dominant

    power in the Ottoman Empire, and, thus, providing protection for the British overland

    route and establishing a peculiar form of imperialism for the Ottoman Empire. Although

    British imperialism is not the focus of this dissertation, this British imperial activity

    provided the model that the Germans eventually used (almost without revision) to

    establish themselves as an imperial power in the Ottoman Empire. While the Germans

    lacked the same security concerns as the British, the British model did not require the

    same motivations, merely the same methods.

    Printing Office, 2005) 87.

    46The British gained Gibraltar, in perpetuity, from the Spanish in the Treaty of Utrecht(1713); however, the British only formally incorporated it into the British Empire in1830.

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    The purpose of this chapter is to explain the conditions that led the British, and

    eventually other European powers, to impose this peculiar form of imperialism on the

    Ottoman Empire. Specifically, this chapter explains the international conditions that

    developed, which compelled the British to overcome their reticence to establish

    themselves as the imperial power in the Ottoman Empire. These international conditions

    arose (immediately) from the development of Russian influence in Constantinople and

    the Treaty of Hnkir skelesi (1833), which the British feared provided the Russians a

    future opportunity to occupy Constantinople and, thus, the principal areas of the Ottoman

    Empire. In addition to explaining the conditions that led the British to become the mostimportant imperial power in the Ottoman Empire, this chapter will also explain the

    elements of the peculiar imperialism that the British developed. Understanding this model

    of imperialism is important, because, by 1880, the Germans had appropriated it for

    themselves as they sought to become the premiere imperial power in the Ottoman

    Empire. The British model of imperialism for the Ottoman Empire represented a

    temporary solution to the broad European interest in Ottoman territories, which lasted

    from the seventeenth-century into the nineteen-twenties and became known as the

    Eastern Question.47

    Conventionally, the Eastern Question centered on two concerns: the debate about

    what would happen (i.e. would the European states fight each other or make some general

    agreement) when the Ottoman government collapsed and the Ottoman Empire no longer

    47Until the eighteenth-century, the Eastern Question related to Poland, and in thenineteenth-century the term applied to both China and the territory of Central Asia(including present day Afghanistan). However, this dissertation considers the EasternQuestion in the context of the Ottoman Empire.

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    existed (both of which were considered inevitabilities),48and what would the future

    relationship between the Balkan states and the Ottoman government be (sometimes called

    the Balkan Question)? Although the defeat of the Ottoman armies in 1683 catalyzed the

    Eastern Question, the latter did not appear immediately. Instead, many historians date the

    origins of the Eastern Question to the Treaty of Khk Kainardji (1774), in which the

    Ottoman government, among other things, ceded a port at the mouth of the Don River on

    the Sea of Azov and territories along the Black Sea to the Russians and, importantly, the

    Khanate of Crimea (which had been administered by the Turks prior to the treaty)

    became an independent state.


    The Eastern Question usually contemplated the end of

    48Rene Albrecht-Carrie. A Diplomatic History of Europe Since the Congress of Vienna,Harpers Historical Series, ed. Guy Stanton, (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1958), 40.The concern about the inevitability of the Ottoman Empires collapse has exercisedhistorians interested in the Eastern Question for some time. Regrettably, most of thesehistorians have dedicated themselves to a study of the reasons for the internal collapse ofthe Ottoman Empire, often focusing on the decadence or inadequacy of the OttomanSultans of the nineteenth-century. This is an inadequate answer and it must be consideredmore broadly, specifically within the geopolitical context of the nineteenth-century. For agood discussion of this, see: F.A.K. Yasamee, Ottoman Diplomacy: Abdlhamid II andthe Great Powers, 1878-1888(Istanbul: Isis Press, 1996), 1-2. Also see, Cemal Kafadar,The Question of Ottoman Decline,Harvard Middle Eastern and Islamic Review4(1997-1998): 30-75.

    49M.S. Anderson, The Eastern Question, 1774-1923(New York: St. Martins Press,1966), xi-9. Also see, Barbara Jelavich,Russias Balkan Entanglements, 1806-1914(New York: Cambridge University Press, 1991). Of course, the Crimea remained acontested territory, with the Russians seizing it in 1783 and the Crimean War beingfought over it from 1853-1856.

    Subsequent treaties supported and reinforced the Treaty of Khk Kainardji,including the Treaty of Peace (Jassy), signed between Russia and the Sublime Porte on 9January 1792. Although this strengthened the Russian position it did not dramaticallyalter the spirit of the Treaty of Khk Kainardji; thus, instead of detailing every treatyand agreement between Russia and the Sublime Porte, the Treaty of Khk Kainardjiwill serve as the model for Russian expansion towards the Ottoman Empire. See, JacobC. Hurewitz, Treaty of Peace (Jassy), in The Middle East and North Africa in WorldPolitics: A Documentary Record(New Haven: Yale University Press, 1975), 92-100

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    the Ottoman Empire, but between 1774 and 1914 the Powers (in the late eighteenth- and

    all of the nineteenth-century) imposed a series of treaties aimed at preventing the

    Ottoman Empire from collapsing.

    Scholars who have considered the Eastern Question have generally done so based

    on the premise that the Ottoman Empire was on the verge of immediate and uncorrectable

    collapse. Conventionally, these scholars explain the dire condition of the Ottoman

    Empire by detailing the decadence and corruption within its internal structure.50 While

    this view corresponds with many contemporary understandings of the Ottoman Empire, it

    is too simplistic. Instead, to appreciate the condition of the Ottoman Empire in thenineteenth-century, it is important to recognize the significant role played by international

    affairs, which were particularly important because of the Empires geography. 51Instead

    (hereafter cited as Hurewitz, even though later citations will refer to treaties anddocuments other than the Treaty of Jassy).

    50Yasamee, 1-2. Another important discussion of the long term reasons for the decline ofthe Ottoman Empire is Jack Goldstone, who places the Ottoman Empire within many ofthe same financial and demographic crises that faced Europe. Although the nineteenth-century history of the Ottoman Empire deviates somewhat from the European model,Goldstone makes a compelling argument for not viewing the problems faced by theOttoman Empire as unique to them. See: Jack Goldstone,Revolution and Rebellion inthe Early Modern World(Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991), 354-355.

    51Yasamee, 1. It cannot be denied that the Ottoman Empire faced internal problems,specifically with tax collecting and independence movements; however, whatdifferentiated the problems faced by the Ottoman Empire in the nineteenth-century fromthose of previous centuries was the new international situation, and especially thetechnical advantages of the European powers. The Ottoman government had never fullyimposed itself on its provinces, but in the late eighteenth-century these provinces hadmore autonomy than they conventionally did. Still the Ottoman government continued toexist and even attained some success in military, cultural, and economic fields. See:William Ochsenwald and Sydney Nettleton Fischer, The Middle East: A History6thed.(New York: McGraw Hill, 2004), 247 (hereafter cited as Ochsenwald, this serves as theprincipal narrative history resource for this chapter).

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    of focusing on the decadence of the Sultan, this dissertation ascribes the weakness of the

    Ottoman Empire to, among other things, two major geopolitical issues that challenged the

    Empires continued existence. These conditions were: the Empires geographic

    proximity to the important strategic positions in the Near East (i.e. the Straits and India),

    and the number and proximity of the Empires potential enemies.52 While the Ottoman

    Empire always faced challenges from its neighbors,53the consequence of its economic

    and technological backwardness, by the nineteenth-century, made the Empires

    traditional international problems acute. However, in spite of its relative geographic

    vulnerability and the improved military technology of the West, the Ottoman Empirecould not simply be divided among the European powers as other colonial territories of

    the period had been (or would be, in the case of Africa), because the colonization of the

    principal territories of the Ottoman Empire would upset the European balance of power

    and possibly precipitate a European war. A series of treaties signed between 1774 and

    1856 created an imperial system in which the Powers could assert themselves in the

    Ottoman Empire without upsetting the European balance of power.

    Although many factors discouraged the formal colonization, or even partition, of

    the principal Ottoman territories,54four require explanation (however, these factors can

    52Yasamee, 2.

    53Kafadar, 44-50. Kafadar concludes the Ottoman Empires internal conditions andthe actions of its rulers were insignificant in the face of an irresistible outside power thatsimply swept them into underdevelopment. Kafadar, 50. Building on Wallersteinstheories, Kafadar contends that the important explanation for the Ottoman we